Katie Bouman is the Scientist Behind the First Ever Picture of A Black Hole

Years of work finally paid off!

Big news this week as the first ever image of a supermassive black hole was shown to the world thanks to a 29-year-old MIT graduate named Katie Bouman.

She has a postdoctoral from the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics and ended up creating the algorithm that rendered the image. She had been working on the computer program since 2013. She compared taking this photo to trying to take a picture of “an orange on the moon”.

She and her team used eight telescopes (positioned in different places around the world) and merged them into one computational telescope. It took 200 scientists and her algorithm to convert the data into the image we see.